I call it “The Disneyland for Honeymooners.”
For me and my husband, The Kayon Resort is the happiest place in Ubud. Correction: it is the happiest place IN BALI, at least for us. This was our home for 4 days and 3 nights during our honeymoon in Bali, and when I say “home,” I mean that in the truest sense of the word. The moment we stepped inside this gorgeous wonderland, we immediately felt the most genuine Balinese hospitality from The Kayon’s staff as they warmly greeted us “Welcome to our home!” And home is really what the place felt like to us for our entire stay.
Choosing our accommodations in Bali was one of the toughest decisions I had to make while planning our trip. The reason is not because I could not find something that appealed to us. On the contrary, I had such a hard time choosing a place to stay because there are just WAY too many impressive choices for lodging in Bali! In the end, I was able to narrow down my choices after realizing a few things:
- I wanted to start our trip in Ubud because it is the heart of arts and culture in Bali. Ubud, nestled in nature and radiating with spirituality, makes for a romantic, peaceful, and relaxing location for a honeymoon.
- I wanted a quiet and intimate sanctuary, away from the noise and the crowds.
- We wanted something that offered value for money.
The Kayon Resort ticked all the boxes!
The Kayon aims to present a “truly Ubud arts & culture experience” to every guest of the resort, and this is seen everywhere, from the decorations down to the food. Tucked away in the rainforests of Ubud and surrounded with the holy Petanu River, there is really something about The Kayon that calms the body, mind, and soul.
The Kayon is also a dreamland for people who want to get away from it all. With only a total of 23 rooms, it really is the most ideal hideaway for serenity seekers, especially couples on their honeymoon who want to spend quality time with each other. In fact, The Kayon’s overall concept is a “honeymoon and healing resort“! Jackpot!
When we got dropped off at the resort, I was stunned for a moment. I couldn’t believe I was going to spend the next 3 nights in this heaven of a home! As soon as Mike took in the view, he commented, “Oh, nice!” Nice?! Nice is a weak adjective to describe such a stunning place, but I guess he was also at a loss for words. It was not a massive, flashy, or heavily ornamented 5-star hotel. However, it was cozy, homey, and intimate, but majestic and impressive at the same time.
We checked in at the lobby and were carefully assisted by their friendly staff. They cheerfully welcomed us by wearing a flower garland over our necks and tucking a frangipani flower behind our ears. The resort manager, Nengah Suweca, took the time to personally greet us and wish us a pleasant stay, which was really nice of him. Pingki, the sweet front desk agent, also greeted us a “happy honeymoon!”
And as if we weren’t warmly welcomed enough already, the staff held up a Balinese umbrella over our heads and escorted us to the Kepitu Restaurant where we were given the most refreshing and delicious drink we’ve ever had in Bali: the Petanu Cooler, a magical concoction of mint, ginger, lime, honey, and possibly some secret fairy dust. Now that Mike and I are back in the Philippines, on scorching hot days when we’re in need of a thirst-quenching drink, we always say, “I want a Petanu Cooler!”
While waiting for our room to be ready and our bags to be sent to our room, we stayed at the restaurant while admiring the view of the resort.
Before we went to our room, Pingki explained to us why we were given that room. When I first e-mailed them about my booking, I requested for a few things for our room: one that was on a higher floor and not directly under the restaurant, and had a king-size bed and a good view of the river. As a former hotelier, I would understand if not all my requests were granted, especially since The Kayon is always fully booked. But to our delight, each of our requests were addressed, and we were given top priority because it was our honeymoon!
And unlike some hotels where they just hand over the room key to their guests and let them find their own way, the staff actually accompanied us to our room so we wouldn’t get lost. One of them, a very petite girl, even offered to carry Mike’s bag which was too big and heavy for such a delicate little lady to carry! Once we arrived in our room, Pingki showed us around and explained all the features of the room as well as where to find things like the bug spray, where we can put our clothes for washing, etc. So helpful!
And now, I take you to this amazing place we call…
We stayed in a Kayon River Suite (Room 906), which was perched on the river cliff. Our room was distinctly Balinese in style, with elements of bamboo and wood all over, including the ceiling, the furniture, and decors.
Our sweet suite also has its own private terrace with a dining table and comfortable sofa!
Guests have the option of having their breakfast and afternoon tea at the restaurant, at the canyon jetty, or in their private terrace. Whenever we were feeling lazy, which was most of the time, we had our food delivered to our room and ate at our own balcony, with the view of the luscious forest, the sound of the gushing river, and the company of our friends from nature like butterflies and super cool winged lizards. Oh, what a tough life! NOT!
To give you a full picture of the view from our room and private terrace, here it is:
The Petanu river was literally right below us! We had the most amazing sleeps at the Kayon because we could hear the relaxing flow of the river and the cascading of the waterfall, both serving as our natural lullaby. Sometimes, we thought it was raining outside, but it really was just the ambient and soothing sounds of the river and waterfall. Couple that with an insanely comfortable bed and you’re in for the most restful sleep you can ever have!
Other facilities in our room included a LED cable TV and DVD player, a minibar, a safe deposit box, free Wi-Fi, bathrobes, slippers (which we used A LOT, even after we’ve left The Kayon, because they’re nice), and tea & coffee making facilities.
Other room categories available at The Kayon are the Valley Deluxe Room and the River Edge Pool Villa. According to many, if you can afford to splurge, especially on your honeymoon, go for the pool villa, which is much bigger than the other rooms and has its own infinity pool. We were very happy (actually, more than happy!) with our Kayon River Suite though, so that was just perfect for us.
Love the bedroom? Wait ’til you see…
I never thought I’d ever describe a bathroom as “heaven” but that was a fitting description for the Kayon’s bathroom. It was massive, spacious, immaculate, luxurious, and beautiful, and IT HAS A VIEW OF THE JUNGLE! Have you ever had a nice, long, hot bath while gazing at the plush greenery? Oh man… it’s as splendid as it sounds!
As part of the honeymoon surprise, the staff also prepared a delightful flower bath for us. The Kayon signature terrazzo bath tub came with fragrant bath gels and bath salts. On the edge of the tub is a container filled with aromatic holy water gathered from the river, which we used to purify ourselves after our hot bath. Even the baths here are spiritual! (Disclaimer: the holy water is cold! Brr!)
With a bathroom this fabulous, of course I didn’t pass up the chance to have a photo of myself like this:
Aside from the tub, we also had some very sensuous baths, thanks to the Kayon’s rain shower. It took us so long to shower in the bathroom because it was so good! We didn’t want to leave the shower area anymore!
If I could change one thing about the bathroom, I would probably add more lights, as it can be a little dim. But other than that, this is the kind of bathroom that you wish you had at home!
I told Mike, “You HAVE TO to take a photo of me in the infinity pool!” After all, the infinity pool is one of the major reasons why I chose to book The Kayon.
The Kayon’s infinity pool may not be as big as that of the other hotels, but it was definitely pretty! Overlooking the river and rice fields and encompassed by the verdant jungle, going for a dip in the Kayon’s 16-meter long pool is both a relaxing and interesting experience. Not only was the water nice and pristine, but there was also so much to look at and be fascinated by. As we were wading around, we watched the baby birds fly from one tree to another, a dragonfly take a quick dip in the pool before quickly flying off again, butterflies playfully chasing each other, the bountiful trees and plant life… It was fun!
The pool area also had nice and comfortable day beds that guests can chill out on.
The infinity pool area at the Kayon is a great place to unwind, whether you want to swim, read a book, or simply just laze around. Guests can order drinks from the Kepitu Restaurant and enjoy them at the pool area. Fresh and clean towels are also provided on the pool chairs. One more thing that I loved about the pool? Even when there were other people swimming, it never felt crowded. Most of the time, we had the pool to ourselves.
Step inside the Kayon Resort and you will notice one unmistakable thing: their meticulous attention to every painstaking detail. Every part of this remarkable resort is obviously well-thought-out, inspired by nature and Balinese culture.
The Kayon is named after a leaf-shaped shadow puppet symbolizing the “tree of life” which connects the earthly world to the spiritual world. It is really a befitting name for the resort because being here really does make you feel one with nature and the metaphysical universe. The Kayon’s shape is carried out in various parts of the resort, such as the swimming pool, the bath tub, and artworks.
Ubud, with its reputation as the soul of Balinese arts and culture, is famed for its skilled wood and stone carvers and painters. Just walk around the streets and markets of Ubud and you’ll see countless artworks made by the talented Balinese craftsmen. Staying true to their goal of providing a “truly Ubud experience,” The Kayon’s architecture and overall design are profuse with carvings, paintings, and other kinds of artwork using local materials. As you roam around the property, you will feel like you are in an enchanting and ancient hidden kingdom!
A lovely spot at the resort to take a break and have lunch or afternoon tea is the deck at the Canyon Jetty, which is surrounded by stone cliffs and the waterfall.
To reach the Canyon Jetty, you need to descend a long flight of stairs, but I promise you, it will be worth it! If you want to be transported to a state of ecstasy, this is the place to go to.
I seriously think that The Kayon should employ an in-house tour guide because there are too many captivating details and points of interest in this resort, many of which have a good story behind them! One thing is for sure: this marvelous hotel is unlike any other hotel I’ve stayed at, not only in terms of the architecture but also in terms of…
You can stay at the most breathtaking hotel with the finest food and the most outstanding amenities, but if the service is horrible, none of those things even matter. The Kayon Resort, aside from being a being a breathtaking hotel with the finest food and the most outstanding amenities, also prides itself in having the most courteous and helpful staff. The service we received in this resort was truly superior, the best we’ve had in our entire 12-day stay in Bali. In fact, they are one of the major reasons why I call this place “the Disneyland for honeymooners!” They were all so soft-spoken and pleasant, and always had a warm smile on their faces. Every time any of the staff passed us by, they would NEVER fail to greet us “good morning/afternoon/evening” or “om swastiastu” (the Balinese way of saying “hello”). Whenver we dined at the restaurant, they ended their sentences in “please” (“Enjoy your dinner please” or “Here is your bill please”). They were all so genuinely kind that I felt evil next to them! Haha! Nengah, Pingki, Pardi and Eva from the front desk, Ari (Serayu Spa supervisor / substitute yoga class teacher), Krisna and Kadek (Serayu spa staff), Kadek, Ngakan, Dede, Edi and all the friendly staff of the Kepitu Restaurant, and all the other gracious staff members of the Kayon Resort that I failed to get the names of– we miss each and every single one of them! They sure know how to make everyone feel at home. For 4 days, the staff at The Kayon weren’t just staff to us. They were our family.
The Kayon Resort is managed by Pramana Hospitality Management whose mission is to deliver the Balinese concept “Tat Wam Asi,” which is to present a hearty work that creates a peaceful atmosphere, treating everyone the way they would like to be treated. As part of their Corporate Social Responsibility, The Kayon also supports the local village community by employing the young local villagers and giving them hospitality training so they can deliver genuine service from the heart. The Kayon is like a lovely little ecosystem!
Before we (dreadfully) departed, Pingki gave us a going away gift. She tied a Tri Datu bracelet on our right wrists and explained that these bracelets come with a blessing, and they shall bring us positive thoughts and safe travels. Up to our very last day at the resort, The Kayon made our experience meaningful and added a nice touch to our overall stay. Mike and I are still wearing our bracelets as I write this blog post, and we never take them off. Every time we look at these bracelets, we are reminded of the blissful time we had at The Kayon and at the Island of the Gods.
I’m the kind of person that enjoys exploring whenever I’m traveling to a new place. I’m not one to stay put in a hotel. Things changed drastically when Mike and I stayed at The Kayon. Even though we considered taking the hotel’s free shuttle to explore the city, we ended up spending all our time in the resort because it was so hard to leave it! We wanted to savor every moment in our hotel. When you’re staying at such an exquisite place such as The Kayon Resort, you’ll really want to make the most of every single moment you’re in it. I’m not surprised now why it ranks #1 in the list of the Best Hotels for Romance in Indonesia at the TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travelers’ Choice Awards. As a couple who had the happiest and most amazing honeymoon at The Kayon Resort, my husband and I can now say that there is no better place to spend such a special moment like that than here in this little piece of paradise that we were fortunate enough to call our HOME in Bali. We have nothing but love for The Kayon Resort and will always be grateful to them for making our honeymoon such a memorable and extraordinary one.
In my next blog post, I’ll be writing about the other things to see and do at The Kayon resort, such as the Kepitu Restaurant, the Serayu Spa, the free yoga classes, and other free activities offered by the hotel. This hotel is too too awesome that one blog post is not enough!
Tips and things to consider when staying at this hotel:
- There are plenty of stairs and no lifts, so be prepared to do a little climbing and walking — nothing that you can’t handle, I’m sure!
- Be prepared for some close encounters with insects. You ARE close to the rainforest, after all, so that’s a given, but nothing to worry about, really. Surprisingly, I wasn’t bitten by mosquitoes!
- I booked through the official website because it turned out to be cheaper than booking through 3rd party sites, but it doesn’t hurt to compare prices. As for us, we booked the Early Bird Package which is a 3-nights stay with 1 free 60-minute Balinese massage for 2 persons… a deal that we did not find in third party sites.
- Ideal length of stay: FOREVER. But since that’s impossible, I would suggest staying for a MINIMUM of 5 nights. We stayed for 3 nights and it was still too short for us.
- For breakfast and afternoon tea, the staff will ask you if you want coffee or tea. But you can also ask for their hot chocolate because it’s yummy!
- They provide 1 travel adaptor in the room, located inside one of the drawers, just in case you forget to bring yours.
- If you can, try to stay there on a Tuesday (when they hold their Kayon Exotic BBQ) and/or a Friday (when they hold their Balinese Culture Dinner with live assorted Balinese dance. You can take photos with the dancers!)
- High season is from July 1 – August 31. Peak season is from December 21 – January 7.
- Do make reservations as early as you can because this hotel is usually fully booked! (I’m not surprised. It’s THAT good!)
- Warning: After departing from The Kayon, you will have a serious case of separation anxiety. You will miss everything about the place terribly.
The Kayon Resort
Address: Banjar Kepitu, Desa Kendran, Tegallalang, Ubud
Phone: +62 361 479 2553
Fax: +62 361 479 2552
E-mail: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Managed by: Pramana Hotels and Resorts
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